Maryland: Sex-Ed Pilot Is Endorsed by Grasmick
March 8, 2007
On Wednesday, Maryland Superintendent of Schools Nancy S. Grasmick refused to halt field testing of new sex education lessons in six Montgomery County schools. Three citizen groups had requested that the testing be suspended. Under the new lessons, teachers can introduce, for the first time, the topic of sexual orientation to eighth- and 10th-graders. In spring 2005, a federal judge halted field testing of an earlier version of the lessons just days before they were to begin. The lessons have since been rewritten, but the groups continue to oppose them. They filed a petition last month with the state Department of Education saying the lessons harm the "sincere religious moral beliefs regarding homosexual conduct" held by some families. In her five-page opinion, Grasmick wrote that she was "not convinced of the certainty" of the argument that the lessons violate parents' First Amendment rights. "I am convinced, however, of the value of going forward with the field test." Parents must give their written consent for children to attend the classes.
03.08.2007; Daniel de Vise
This article was provided by CDC National Prevention Information Network. It is a part of the publication CDC HIV/Hepatitis/STD/TB Prevention News Update.